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the cyliner head as a trash collector

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i removed the cylinder head off of my XR4oo last night. for lack of a better word, it looked like a buch of "dirt" had collected in there. you're probably thinking that a bunch fell in there when i removed the head cover, but the bike was clean and i was very carefull when removing the cover.

some of the stuff was black, and i concluded that it was either carbon or valve train particles.

some was brown.

i have also checked the down tube screen, and that only yielded 2 or 3 small metal flakes, but was otherwise very clean. i also took apart my last paper oil filter and it also clean.

have you guys experienced this in your engines?

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I wonder the oil change history?

Maybe you want to flush the engine. A few oil changes with a chemical flush although the chems may hurt clutch.

I was thinking of auto engine and there are a few types of flsuh.

Maybe just change oil a few times or tear down entire top end and clean all parts by hand. You could do a top end rebuild with chains/tensioner/cam/ piston and rings and be like new.

Mark

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in a month of ownership i've already put ~400 miles on the bike, and changed the oil 3 times. although there's no telling what the previous owner did or did not do for maintainence.

i noticed there was a plastic "chain guide" (?) near the cam chain. maybe the chain is slowly grinding pieces of this plastic away.

the cost of destroying a clutch from chemical flush is probably better than leaving the particles in there to float around. i'll take the cover off again after a few months and inspect.

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MAR make good points:

You say you removed the cylinder head. Or was it the rocker cover? That's what I thought and figured you were looking at some oil residue buildup.

If you took off the head and were looking at top of pistom then that would be carbon.

Hey, if it's running good change the oil and clean the screens and run the heck out of it. If it has a little internal noise don't sweat it. Make sure valves are adjusted.

Mark

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I hope this isn't a hijack, but you guys are screwing up my brain. Here I think I am just starting to get responsible, maintaining and making easy mods, re-jetting to bring up the performance ( I have absolutely no bog/ flat spot now - dumb luck) and you say I should dig a little deeper once every year or two. I have never even heard of the screen or tube and haven't yet even changed the oil filter. I have had the bike out for one rideable weekend up here in Alberta having bought it in September 2004. But if you're right, I need a new checklist telling me what other routine maintainance some of us retentive types should do. This stuff isn't in any of the sticky's or in Hairy Scary's excellent piece. And it needs to be a little simpler instruction for us rookies. Is Mar right about the need to do this? How long would it take?

Thanks.

Tedd

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...I mean how many people do you think pull the Fuel Strainer Screen on the XR's?

haha i did that the first day when i removed the "varnish" from the tank!

i havent actually removed the head to inspect the piston and cyl wall...just the head cover where all the rockers and sub rockers are.

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I hope this isn't a hijack, but you guys are screwing up my brain. Here I think I am just starting to get responsible, maintaining and making easy mods, re-jetting to bring up the performance ( I have absolutely no bog/ flat spot now - dumb luck) and you say I should dig a little deeper once every year or two. I have never even heard of the screen or tube and haven't yet even changed the oil filter. I have had the bike out for one rideable weekend up here in Alberta having bought it in September 2004. But if you're right, I need a new checklist telling me what other routine maintainance some of us retentive types should do. This stuff isn't in any of the sticky's or in Hairy Scary's excellent piece. And it needs to be a little simpler instruction for us rookies. Is Mar right about the need to do this? How long would it take?

Thanks.

Tedd

you should check out http://www.g2-innovations.com/gentech/manuals.htm for a free xr400 manual. its in pdf form (100megs!) and it will tell the proper service intervals.

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